Skip to main content

Gujarat ranks poor 12th of 21 states in gender vulnerability: "Failure" to protect women from sexual violence

By Our Representative
Even as Gujarat goes to polls, a high-profile NGO Plan India’s new Gender Vulnerability Index (GVI) has found that the model state is behind 11 out of 21 major Indian states. On a scale of 1, Gujarat GVI is 0.543. The best GVI is that of Kerala (0.634), and worst that of Bihar (0.41).
Associated with Plan International, a UK-based NGO, while the Plan India’s 100-page report does not say why Gujarat, despite being a “developed state”, ranks No 12th among 21 major states, the data do suggest that this is mainly because of its lag in the social sector, on one hand, and providing “protection and safety of girls and women”, on the other.
Providing four different dimensions to calculate the overall GVI, protection, education, health, poverty, the report says, the goals is to “identify broadly the challenges which the respective states face” on the basis of “the priorities established” by each of them, and whether these have led to “balanced and inclusive development”.
Thus, in the poverty dimension of GVI, Gujarat’s ranking is quite good, fifth out of 21 major states. In fact, it is behind just four states – Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. But when it comes to two main social indicators, education and health, Gujarat is behind 10 and 11 states, ranking 11th and 12th respectively.
It is the protection dimension which appears to have pulled down Gujarat’s overall ranking. In the protection dimension, which includes sex discrimination and violence, Gujarat’s overall GVI (0.561), and is better than only five states out of 21 – Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.
Plan India recognizes that this dimension of GVI is important because “abuse and the threat of violence are an insult to one’s personal welfare and humanity”, and “these behaviours are not always predicted by a household’s socioeconomic identity and are not likely to end anytime soon.”
Calling it at the heart of its GVI analysis, Plan India says, discrimination in India “starts at the womb and persists throughout her life”, adding, “Girls and women, for every year of their lives, are exposed to specific forms of gender based discrimination which disempowers them and widens the gender divide.”
It adds, “Violence, abuse, neglect are the most brutal suppressions of freedom. Women are vulnerable even before their birth and formative years to female feticide and infanticide. As they grow older, they are at risk of human trafficking, physical and sexual abuse and neglect, and this continues in the form of marital and domestic abuse, dowry harassment and desertion.”
Pointing out that in India, “while the male child is an investment, the girl child is a burden”, the report says, this is proved by the fact that “today, more than 1 out of 4 girls are married before the age of 18, and 1 out of 5 boys are married before the age of 21.”
“Although the incidence of child marriage has fallen significantly in the last two decades, it is still persistent and intergenerational because of the strong social stigma surrounding unmarried girls, preservation of her chastity and as means of protection from sexual violence”, the report says.
It adds, “Crimes against women and children, for instance, reveal how the justice system responds to current crises. Protection is one of the most complex features and in order to allow for children and women to flourish, improvements in their personal wellbeing by protecting their rights is necessary.”

Comments

TRENDING

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site satyagrahis.in. The satyagraha.in article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the satyagraha.in article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

BSF should take full responsibility for death of 4 kids in West Bengal: Rights defender

By Kirity Roy*  One is deeply disturbed and appalled by the callous trench-digging by BSF in Chetnagachh village under Daspara Gram Panchayat, Chopra, North Dinajpur District, West Bengal that has claimed the lives of four children. Along the entire stretch of Indo-Bangladesh border of West Bengal instead of guarding the actual border delineated by the international border pillars, BSF builds fences and digs trenches well inside the Indian territory, passing through villages and encroaching on private lands, often without due clearance or consent. 

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

How GMOs would destroy non-GMO crops: Aruna Rodrigues' key submissions in SC

Counterview Desk The introduction of Bt and HT crops will harm the health of 1 billion Indians and their animals, believes Aruna Rodrigues, who has made some 60 submissions to the Supreme Court (SC) during the last 20 years. As lead petitioner who filed Public Interest Litigation in 2005, during a spate of intense hearings, which ended on 18 January 2024, she fought in the Apex Court to prevent the commercialization of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in Indian agriculture. 

Social justice day amidst 'official neglect' of salt pan workers in Little Rann of Kutch

By Prerana Pamkar*  In India’s struggle for Independence, the Salt Satyagraha stands as a landmark movement and a powerful symbol of nonviolent resistance. Led by Mahatma Gandhi, countless determined citizens walked from Sabarmati Ashram to Dandi in Gujarat. However, the Gujarat which witnessed the power of the common Indian during the freedom struggle is now in the throes of another significant movement: this time it is seeking to free salt pan workers from untenable working conditions in the Little Rann of Kutch (LRK).

Corporatizing Indian agriculture 'to enhance' farmer efficiency, market competitiveness

By Shashank Shukla*  Today, amidst the ongoing farmers' protest, one of the key demands raised is for India to withdraw from the World Trade Organization (WTO). Let us delve into the feasibility of such a move and explore its historical context within India's globalization trajectory.

Jallianwala massacre: Why Indian govt hasn't ever officially sought apology from UK

By Manjari Chatterjee Miller*  The king of the Netherlands, Willem-Alexander, apologized in July 2023 for his ancestors’ role in the colonial slave trade. He is not alone in expressing remorse for past wrongs. In 2021, France returned 26 works of art seized by French colonial soldiers in Africa – the largest restitution France has ever made to a former colony. In the same year, Germany officially apologized for its 1904-08 genocide of the Herero and Nama people of Namibia and agreed to fund reconstruction and development projects in Namibia. .

Interpreting UAPA bail provisions: Is Supreme Court setting the clock back?

By Kavita Srivastava*, Dr V Suresh** The Supreme Court in its ruling on 7th February, 2024 in   `Gurvinder Singh v State of Punjab’ held that its own well-developed jurisprudence that "Bail is the rule and jail the exception" will not apply to those charged under the UAPA.

A 'distorted narrative' of Indian politics: Congress failing to look beyond LS polls

By Prem Singh*  About 15 days ago, I told a senior journalist friend that there are not even two   months left for the Lok Sabha elections, Rahul Gandhi is roaming around on a delectation (tafreeh). The friend probably found my comment exasperating and replied that he is not on a delectation trip. The conversation between us on this topic ended there. 

Livelihood issues return to national agenda ahead of LS polls: SKM on Bharat Bandh

Counterview Desk  Top farmers' network, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) has claimed big success of Grameen Bharat Bandh and industrial /sectoral strikes, stating, the “struggle reflected anger of farmers, workers and rural people across India”, adding, the move on February 16 succeeded in bringing back peoples’ livelihood issues in the national agenda just ahead of the general election to the Lok Sabha.